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Local Buds Garden Club donates tree memorial

Sandi Mackynen and Lowell Peterson kneel beside the 834-pound stone and maple tree the Buds Garden Club had purchased in honor of those serving in the military and their families.

"We just wanted to let them know we care."

Sandi Mackynen, member of the Somerset Buds Garden Club, spoke of the Autumn Blaze maple tree that they had planted between the Somerset Town Hall and Highway 35.

The 8-foot tall tree was purchased by the club back in early summer, using the proceeds from their annual plant sale.

Each year, the club uses its fundraising money for a community beautification project. This year, Mackynen suggested doing something for the soldiers serving overseas.

"I don't know anyone personally serving, or any of their families," said Mackynen. "But they are in my thoughts all the time."

Lowell Peterson said the club liked the idea and decided to get a maple tree and have a dedication plaque on a stone.

"I got the tree from Farm and Home; we planted it in May," said Peterson. "The granite rock with the inscription was delivered from Rivard Stone in June - and weighs 834 pounds."

The inscription reads "Thank you to those serving in the military and their families for their sacrifices. - Buds Garden Club 2011."